Database technology has become a common way for nonprofits to handle information, Due to the complexities of technology in general and databases specifically, nonprofits find they are challenged in how to select, use and maintain databases. One solution to this challenge is to outsource a portion of the database work to experts who can be helpful.
Nonprofits can outsource database support in a variety of ways. For instance, a volunteer or a software developer might create a custom database; a consultant might help select or implement a commercial software package; a freelance programmer might write complex reports or a database hosting service might manage servers.
- The process of selecting or building a database can be divided into seven areas, each of which could be outsourced:
- System selection (if buying)
- Custom database development (if building)
- Implementation support
- Database customization, report development, and other enhancements
- Staff support (help desk, training, and documentation)
- System support (database management, server management)
- Needs assessment (including the build vs. buy decision)